A new play by Trevor Pitt
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Trevor Pitt is looking for 5 very strong female actors, confident with text and experienced at script development to work with him on a new show, YARNING. This is Trevor’s first play and he is working with amazing team of theatre practitioners to push for something extraordinary.
YARNING is the culmination of 10 years work by Trevor who has been working with knitters, spinners and sheep farmers from across the country. YARNING will premiere at mac Birmingham, after which it will go through a further phase of development, being adapted to tour rural venues in England.
YARNING is about the relationship between knitting and the individual lives of 5 women and will feature 5 interweaving monologues.
Trevor Pitt is a nationally acclaimed artist and independent curator with a 15 Year track record of creating inventive, intelligent collaborative projects. He works in various formats including music, performance, events and runs A3 Project Space in Birmingham. http://www.podprojects.org/
YARNING is part of Craftspace Curates. Craftspace is an award-winning organisation, pioneering approaches to engaging a diverse public with exceptional contemporary craft, celebrating its 30th year. Craftspace Curates is in partnership with mac birmingham. The programme considers the variety of ways in which we can encounter and engage with craft. Makers and other practitioners are using a wide range of creative methods to tell stories about craft and making. This includes performance, film, animation, sound art, installation, digital media and public art.
mac birmingham has served as one of the country’s foremost arts centres for over 50 years, with a strong history of programming a wide variety of theatre. http://macbirmingham.co.uk/
The play weaves the stories of 5 women who spin tales about their childhood and how they grew up with knitting as part of their lives. Told as monologues their individual stories are life affirming and each have an element of surviving against the odds to achieve personal dreams.
Each monologue is 12 – 15 mins in total, told in episodes.
The play has roles for actors playing ages from late 20s to 70s.
Actors will not be expected to be experienced knitters, but must be open to learn the basics.
Role 1: Ashley: woman, playing age late 20s -30s (crafter who runs a textile studio in an urban environment) – goth / quirky / intelligent / caring / libertine
Ashley was a super intelligent school-girl who everyone expected to become a scientist or a captain of industry. Instead she followed her heart and passion for all things creative and craft so set up her knitting and sewing studio catering for misfits and life’s oddballs: making magic curtains for conjurors, knitting bespoke jumpers for XXXL men, crafting costumes for the burlesque community (her speciality is knitting nipple covers) and has strong links with the LGBTQ community.
Role 2: Marion: woman, playing age 30s to 40s (crafter originally from Rickmansworth in London suburbs, now runs a guest house and small business in rural Devon) - jovial / optimistic / resourceful / no-nonsense.
Marion left Rickmansworth in London’s suburbs with her 4 young children to set up a guest house in Devon. As a single parent she developed her small business to provide for her children and turned her hobby of knitting and weaving into a thriving cottage industry. She was taught to knit as a child, not by her mother but her Uncle who led an ordinary yet fascinating life.
Role 3: Betty: woman, playing age 50s – 60s (sheep farmer and wool maker) – down to earth / kindly / charming / resourceful.
Betty’s lifelong ambition was to live in her beloved Cumbria and be a farmer so she moved her family from Manchester to bring up her children on a small holding. When Foot & Mouth hit in 2001 she and the local farmers were devastated. With other women she set up a co-operative that made use of local wools. They are now thriving and run the Wool Clip as a co-operative retail outlet in Caldbeck and organising Woolfest in Cockermouth every year.
Role 4: Greta: woman, playing age 60s (Women’s Institute and committee member) - outgoing / quirky / chatty / opinionated / team leader / Northern Lass / family originally from The Orkneys
Greta’s parents split up when she was 6 years old when she went to live with her Aunty who was the housekeeper of the local Doctor. Her dad was a Skipper and she would see him from time to time when returned from sea journeys with gifts. She tells of growing up in “Doc’s House” as a big tall goofy girl who loved books and became head girl of her school. Her aunty was a brilliant knitter so Greta was a great disappointment to her as she was absolutely hopeless at any kind of craft.
Role 5: Gloria: woman, playing age 70s (down to earth mother and housewife) - kind / thoughtful / no-nonsense / Geordie - brought up in a colliery village
Gloria was born in Scarborough Workhouse and was handed over to her Aunt and Uncle who bought her up with their family as one of their own. She tells colourful tales of life on the Colliery Rows in Throckley and how knitting has always been a part of her life.
R&D: Trevor Pitt will work 1-2-1 with the actors at pre-arranged dates and place during March 2016.
Rehearsals: Actors will need to be available for an ensemble workshop on Thurs 24 March, 10am - 4pm at mac birmingham and for rehearsals 4 – 6 April at mac birmingham
Performance: 7 April 7.30, The Foyle Studio, mac birmingham
Casting will take place on two dates. Please specify in your application which date you prefer to attend.
• Monday 22 February in Birmingham.
• Wednesday 24 February in London.
Submit your CV and headshot to Hannaa Hamdache at email@example.com by Wednesday 17 February, by noon, with ‘Casting Call – Yarning’ as the subject line.
Outsider Craft - call for submissions closes October 2015
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